Tag: historic venue


Katy & Mitch got married at Willowdale on a sunny summer day in June. Mitch serves in the Marine Core and looked dashing wearing his dress blues on his wedding day!

Military groom in his dress blues for his wedding day. -1

Katy’s off the shoulder wedding dress was stunning with so many ornate details! The dress had 3 quarter length sleeves was adorned with pearls and rhinestones making it sparkle while a long trail of buttons went all down her back.

Bride gets ready in the wedding suite at wedding and event Willowdale Estate north of Boston

The natural light shining through the trees made for a perfect backdrop for Katy and Mitch’s first look portraits.

First look portrait at Willowdale Estate

Katy wore a cathedral length veil during the ceremony in our garden courtyard facing the back of our fieldstone mansion. Bistro lights cascaded overhead from the tent to the courtyard where Katy & Mitch exchanged vows in front of our birch arbor decorated with florals by Celia’s Flower Studio in Gloucester, MA.

Outdoor wedding reception at historic Willowdale Estate in Topsfield, Mass.

The groomsmen also looked dapper in their military dress blues complete with ceremonial Marine Corps. swords! They are posing in front of the original entrance of the estate!

Marine Core groom and groomsmen pose for a portrait at wedding and event venue Willowdale Estate in Topsfield, MA

The bridesmaids wore floor length chiffon gowns in earth tone colors and held large bouquets with lots of greenery and pops of white.

Bridesmaids wearing floor length chiffon dresses in neutral colors

An assortment of hors d’oeuvres were passed during cocktail hour including mushroom spring rolls and local cod croquette with lemon aioli.

Egg roll hors' doeuvres for cocktail hour at Willowdale Estate in north shore massachusetts

Gourmet catering from Willowdale Kitchens

If you’re looking for an alternative to a traditional guestbook, instead have a custom piece of art made that your guests can make their mark on!

A great guest book alternative - a blank map of the state you're getting married in with a heart mapping the exact location

The groomsmen conducted an official “arch of swords” as Katy & Mitch walked into through the garden courtyard for the reception.

Arch of swords for wedding

The reception space was set up with our upgraded walnut farm tables and chiavari chairs which looked great against the whimsy of our garden courtyard.

Gorgeous outdoor wedding reception with farm tables under tent in garden courtyard.


Instead of table numbers, they decided to name the tables after places they’ve traveled together complete with a photo of them in that place.

What a great idea if you and your spouse love to travel! Name your reception tables after places you've been together and include a picture of you in that place!

When dusk set in the glow of the bistro lights lit up the entire reception area as the guests enjoyed dinner.

dan aguirre - summer tent wedding with bistro lights

To end the night on a sweet note, an assortment of mini desserts was served including whoopie pies, macaroons and cannolis made by Topsfield Bakeshop!

dan aguirre - whoopie pie and cannoli dessert display

photos: dan aguirre photography

Contact our sales team to learn more about planning a wedding at Willowdale Estate!

info@willowdaleestate.com / 978-887-8211

Date: July 25th, 2017

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Date: April 22nd, 2016


Our historic home was commissioned in 1901 as a weekend retreat and as a place for the prominent lawyer Bradley Palmer to exercise his horses. The original entrance to the home was through the North Wing, which looked out onto a grassy lawn that sloped down towards the Ipswich River. In the 1920’s the rooms that originally held the stables and carriage house were converted into our Great Room and Dining Room, and the iconic red door entrance was added to the western side of the house. The North Wing is warm and spacious with hand-carved wooden details, high ceilings, built-in benches, and fireplaces.

Historic arts and crafts style North Wing with exposed beams and benches at Willowdale Estate in Topsfield Massachusetts willowdaleestate.com (800x533)

Shane Godfrey Photography


The double doors leading into the home are adorned with steel fixtures, and there are two small windows on the left and right side of the door. The window on the eastern side of the entrance has a small stained glass rooster with the word “Matin” (“The Morning Song of Birds”) and the western side of the entrance has a window with an owl and the word “Vesper” (“The Evening Star”) as a reference for the sunrise and sunset.

Stained glass rooster with matin written on north wing window at Willowdale Estate in Topsfield Massachusetts willowdaleestate.com (600x800) Stained glass owl with vesper written on north wing window at Willowdale Estate in Topsfield Massachusetts willowdaleestate.com (600x800)

Photo: Sarah Boucher

The rich oak and cherry wood throughout the North Wing of the house are a prominent feature. Another significant door that is visible from the front entrance is one of the doors leading to the original location of the stables. The door has three window panels with wrought iron decorative glass, and depicts three horsemen with an inscription from Shakespeare’s “A Lovers Complaint”.

‘Well could he ride, and often men would say

‘That horse his mettle from his rider takes:

Arts and crafts syle entry with steel fixtures to historic Willowdale Estate in Topsfield Massachusetts willowdaleestate.com (532x800) View More: http://brianamoore.pass.us/yvonne-steve-married

Briana Moore Photography


The parlor has a smaller fireplace with large windows that face the western and northern sides of the property. This may have been the location of a dining table in the original layout of the home. Today we often setup our wooden bar in the Parlor, the perfect place to enjoy music and drinks!

Parlor with cockail tables and bar at Willowdale Estate in Topsfield Massachusetts willowdaleestate.com (800x533)

Shane Godfrey Photography


The Library has built-in cabinets and shelving with detailed molding lining the entire room. A large mantle and ample space for books helps us to conclude that this room may have had a study desk or reading chairs at some point! This room is perfect for private meetings, meals and as additional space for cocktail hour!

Library with fireplace and shelves Willowdale Estate in Topsfield Massachusetts willowdaleestate.com (800x533)

Shane Godfrey Photography

If you liked this post please check out the other “HISTORIC DETAILS” posts below:

Dining Room

Windows of Willowdale 

The Wedding Suite

Great Room 

Date: November 6th, 2015
Categories: Historic Details

Historic Details – Wedding Suite

The Wedding Suite at Willowdale serves as a popular spot for wedding parties to get their hair and makeup done, eat lunch and acts as a place of solace before the ceremony takes place. In addition to weddings, the suite can also be used for small meetings and break-space.  It has many large windows and plenty of comfortable seating options creating a bright and inviting environment.

Wedding event suite with rustic beams and chaise lounge at Willowdale Estate in Topsfield, MA www.willowdaleestate.com

Wedding hospitality suite event venue with colorful flowers at Willowdale Estate in Topsfield, MA www.willowdaleestate.com

Formally, this suite was Bradley Palmer‘s bedroom. In Bradley’s time, the north facing window presented the perfect view of the Ipswich River, but today the forest trees have blocked that view.

Historic estate wedding suite with large windows at Willowdale Estate in Topsfield, MA www.willowdaleestate.com

The south facing window of the suite faced the horse stables, which is now home to our unique dining room.

Wedding hospitality suite with makeup station and large windows at Willowdale Estate in Topsfield, MA www.willowdaleestate.com

The on-suite bathroom is quite large and evokes warm and bold details such as the multi-colored tile, ornate wallpaper and a grand bathtub that is elevated on a small platform in the middle of the room. The on-suite has the same layout when Bradley lived at the estate, but the original bathtub has been replaced.

Wedding venue on-suite with multi-colored tile, huge bathtub and decorative wallpaper at Willowdale Estate in Topsfield, MA www.willowdaleestate.com

If you liked these photos of our Wedding Suite check out our complete VENUE GUIDE for more information or visit us during one of our public events!

If you’re interested in learning more about weddings at Willowdale, please contact: info@willowdaleestate.com to hear from one of our Sales Managers!

If booking a corporate or social event is what you’re looking for, please contact our Corporate & Social Events Sales Manager, Noah Quist: noah@willowdaleestate.com

Photo credits from top:

Shane Godfrey Photography

Erin McGinn Photography

Kerri Lundberg, Marketing Coordinator at Willowdale Estate (2)

Shane Godfrey Photography

Date: July 24th, 2015